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Mini CNC Router 


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Mini CNC Router 

Written By: grigoriusorin 


The mini CNC router is simple to build. If you have all the materials and parts prepared you 
should have it ready to work in less than 5 days. 

I needed to build this mini CNC machine so I can make faster and more precise parts that I 
need for my other home projects. 

You can also find the complete instructions at 
until I complete it here. 

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Mini CNC Router 

Step 1 — Mini CNC specifications 

• The working area of the machine is 
X=450mm (approx. 17.5 inch) and 
Y=250mm (approx. 10 inch) and it 
can mill parts as high as Z=110mm 
(approx 5 inch). The maximum 
milling speed on X an Y axis is 
2400mm/min. and on Z axis is 
1800mm/min. The resolution of 
each axis is 1/50 or two hundredths 
of a millimeter and one motor 
revolution on each axis results in 4 
mm of movement. The router used 
is a Kress 1050. The number of 
parts used for building this mini 
CNC machine is 42, excepting 
screws and nuts, and the total cost 
is $1200.19. 

Step 2 — Required tools and skills 

• For this project you will need to 
have a set of screwdrivers and a 
set of hex keys or Allen keys, a 
drill for some extra holes, metal- 
cutting saw to cut some custom 
parts, soldering station or soldering 
gun to join the wires so they'll have 
good conductivity, and a 
multimeter. You should have 
knowledge of basic electronics, 
how to solder and how to use a 

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Page 2 of 7 

Mini CNC Router 

Step 3 — Ordering components 

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• All the parts used to build the machine were bought from local dealers, so I suggest you do 
the same if it's cheaper (parts + transport). If not you can find all the parts on eBay. The 
trapezoidal cylindrical nut was made in a local workshop. 

Step 4 — Mechanical components - aluminum profiles 

• The frame is made of aluminum profiles and the parts are: 

• X base parts - 2 pieces of 400x120x30mm (cost: $52.32); 

• Y frame parts - 2 pieces of 400x120x30mm (cost: $52.32), 1 piece of 380x60x30mm (cost: 

• Y carriage - 1 piece of 120x120x30mm (cost: $7.85); 

• Z carriage - 1 piece of 120x120x30mm (cost: $7.85); 

• Z frame parts - 2 pieces of 120x60x30mm (cost: $8.30); 

• Machining the aluminum profiles (cost: $72.00). Total cost: $213.80. 

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Page 3 of 7 

Mini CNC Router 

Step 5 — Mechanical components - shafts, bearings and leadscrews 

• 020mm precision steel shafts for X 
axis (cut from 1 piece of 60- 
inch=1 524mm shaft): 2 pieces, 
each 600mm long (cost: $54.00); 

• 016mm precision steel shafts for Y 
axis (cut from 2 pieces of 30- 
inch=762mm shaft): 2 pieces, each 
390mm long (cost: $29.95); 

• 016mm precision steel shafts for Z 
axis (cut from 2 pieces of 372mm 
shaft left over from the Y-axis 
shafts): 2 pieces, each 300mm 
long (cost: $29.95); 

• Machining the precision steel 
shafts: 6 pieces (cost: $25.00). 

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Mini CNC Router 

Step 6 — Electronic components - Motors 




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• The motors chosen for this project are 3Nm 8-wire stepper motors that can be wired as 
unipolar or bipolar, depending on the user's choice or which driver you have. Three 3Nm 
stepper motors (cost: $158.20). 

• A unipolar stepper motor has two windings per phase, one for each direction of 
magnetic field. This motor has only five leads. Bipolar motors have a single winding 
per phase. The current in a winding needs to be reversed in order to reverse a magnetic 
pole. There are two leads per phase; none are common. 

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Mini CNC Router 

Step 7 — Electronic components - motor controller 

• The stepper motor driver used is a 
unipolar 4-axis driver for 5A/phase 
motors. Cost: $82.50. 

• Electrical properties: 

• Input Power: 20-40V DC. 

• Stepper motor drive current: 
1 .5A - 5A/phase. 

• Compatible stepper motors: 2 or 
4 phase, 6 or 8 lead stepper 
motors, 5A max. 

• Dimensions: 18 x 12 x 6 cm (L x 
Wx H). 

• This board allows you to control 4 
stepper motors, as well as receive 
input from two limit switches per 
motor and from an emergency-stop 
button, and it has a relay interface 
for spindle motors. 

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Mini CNC Router 

Step 8 — Power supply components 

• The power source contains one 
600W toroidal transformer (cost: 
$76.60), one 50-amp rectifying 
bridge (cost: $1.90) and one 
20,000uF capacitor (cost: $7.99). 
Total cost: $86.49. 

Step 9 — Motor controller case 

• For the motor controller case I used an old Keithley236 source measure unit. I have 
removed all the guts of the old thing to make way for the new motor controller and power 

This document was last generated on 2012-10-30 10:50:40 PM. 

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